Hays High student dies in vehicle fire in Austin


Staff report


Hays CISD has identified the Hays High student who was killed in Tuesday's fatal accident in south Austin as 16-year-old James Otto. 

A gofundme account has been created to assist the Otto family with costs associated with the tragedy. 

Accrording to the page, $6,090 of a $10,000 goal has been raised thus far. 

Here's a link to the Otto family gofundme page: https://www.gofundme.com/joshuaottofund


A Hays High junior was killed Tuesday after the teenager was unable to escape a vehicle that rolled over and caught fire near Southpark Meadows in South Austin.

Tuesday's accident happened at around the 9800 block of Alice Mae Lane shortly after 6 p.m. Authorities have not released the name of the victim.  

Hays CISD public information officer Tim Savoy confirmed Tuesday that the victim was a current junior at Hays High. Savoy said crisis counselors would be on hand at Hays High Wednesday morning for students and staff members.

According to multiple reports, emergency officials were dispatched to a vehicle rescue and a car fire for a one-vehicle rollover crash involving a late model Jeep. 

Emergency officials believe four people were in the vehicle, but only three of them escaped. The teenager was in the front side passenger seat but was trapped in the vehicle and killed.

According to a report from KXAN News, the Austin Fire Department believes alcohol played a major factor in the accident.

The Austin Police Department is investigating.

Savoy said Tuesday marked the fifth death of a current or former Hays CISD student since December. Four of those deaths have occurred within the past week.

"It's been a very difficult time for the district as a whole…so many of our staff members knew these students and former students," Savoy said. "It affects anyone when a tragedy like this happens. We've had too many in the past several weeks."

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